Tag Archives: giles ellis

Schofield Light – General Purpose Field Watch

Schofield watches for me are one of the founders of the re-emergence of British watch brands, I remember their stand at the Salon QP manned by Giles Ellis and his similarly hipster looking colleague. A style very different from the usual image of watchmakers, presenting watches very different in style to most other market offerings, as well as being one of the bronze innovators.

One constant of the brand has been the 44mm case in various materials, making the obvious branding on the dial  unnecessary. This was a design strategy that I admire, I often ask myself whether other companies would profit from a similar strategy, imagine for example the entire Fears range based on the Brunswick cushion case. The issue that Giles has with his case design is that it is very  expensive to produce. So to be able to offer the Schofield experience at a lower entry cost he has come up with the two new  watches, the Light One and the Dark One based on the same case design.

The first Schofield Light – Brighton September 2023

My first sight of the watch was the Dark One on Giles’ wrist at the Brighton British watch get together last September. As I was not expecting this deviation my first thought was that he was wearing a Braun, which did seem odd. I asked for a closer look, Giles explained it was a future new model. At this point I saw the opportunity to ask for an example to review when he was ready – of course you can. I left Brighton with a smile wondering when the watch would be ready as the example I had seen looked very finished.

The festive break came and went and then mid-January the announcement is made, the Dark One and the Light One are available, 150 examples of each variant. I e-mailed Giles straight away, hoping he would remember our chat. Of course he did, soon a package arrived.

Unpacking the Schofield Light

As soon as you remove the courier’s plastic envelope the treat that is Schofield packaging starts. The outer sleeve being protected by the oily looking paper I associate with ball bearings. Once you remove the outer sleeve you have the user guide and the watch box, which you can see is made from cork. Removing the red lid reveals two straps, a little screwdriver and the watch head neatly wrapped in its own compartment. Giles had sent me the Light One to review.

Even without the strap attached the first impression is that of a substantial weight, very reassuring. The straps come with the quick release attachment, the little screwdriver is for changing the clasp between the two straps. Being lazy and conscious of scratching the clasp, I put the watch on the grey strap, which for the Light One is, in my opinion, the best looking strap.

Whilst I am on the subject of straps, these two straps from Sugar Free ( a sister company of Schofield) are really impressive. As I say, my favourite on the Light One, was the grey version which has a red lining that peaks through at you various adjustment holes. Maybe the choice would be for the black India Rubber strap on the Dark One.

Now onto the watch itself, Giles describes it as a general purpose field watch, built for legibility and reliability – a functional watch with subtle military cues. Powered by an automatic, mechanical Seiko movement NH34A with 24hr GMT. Unusually the GMT is 24 hour not 12, so reading the time in the second time zone requires a little thought.t As I mentioned, The first sensation you have when you pick up the watch is one of substance, of solidity, very much what you would expect as part of the Schofield experience, at the same time it is easy to wear even with more “Smart casual” wear which can be challenging with previous Schofields. This is also helped also by the 4 o’clock position of the crown, avoiding it digging into you wrist.

The grey dial is very “Schofield” very clean and very easy to read, with very subtle branding. I particularily like the red tips of the second and GMT hands. One element missing which for an occasional rail user are the minute indications, which for me always makes setting the time seem a little more approximate, I can understand that it would be messier aesthetically.

I am a huge fan of solid casebacks, especially when the watch uses a pretty standard movement, in this case the Seiko NH34A. As usual Schofield have come up with a very different take on the case back – cool. It is here we discover the watch offers 200 metres water resistance which should amply cover most circumstances the wearer is likely to encounter.

Technical Details

  • General purpose Field watches. The Light One
  • Movement – Seiko NH34A. Hours, minutes and hacking sweep seconds and GMT
  • Power reserve – 44 hours
  • Diameter – 27.4mm
  • Height – 5.32mm
  • Jewels – 24
  • Frequency – 21,600 VPH 4Hz
  • Case – Stainless steel (The Dark One PVD). Anti-fingerprint coating
  • Diameter – 40mm
  • Crystal diameter – 32mm
  • Bezel – Brushed 12 – 6, 36mm diameter
  • Height including lugs – 13.5mm
  • Width between lugs – 22mm
  • Lug length – 48mm
  • Weight with strap and buckle – 96 grammes
  • Crystal – Box sapphire, multiple AR coatings
  • Case Back – Printed mineral crystal. Flush fit, orientated 12-6. Screw in with no opening holes
  • Crown – Double o-ring screw in type with nail groove, engraved with Beam of Light
  • Dials – Split-level, painted, lacquered
  • Date – None
  • Luminescence – Super-LumiNova C3 green emission
  • Hands – Lacquered greys

This watch offers 300, 150 of each version, people an opportunity to have the Schofield experience at a lower cost, currently £2190.


I very much enjoyed my time with the Light One. Schofield offer another very well built carefully designed watch that is different enough from the existing range, and by no means looking like a pared down economical alternative. I am now very curious to see where Schofield will take this case design, I am sure Giles will not leave it at as a two watch range.

In the meantime should you want to find out more or buy a watch visit Schofield’s website or take a trip to Sussex and visit the man himself.

Beautiful Schofield

I have not posted for some time, there are a couple of reasons for this but it mainly because the pleasure of meeting the watch community in person is severely restricted. An e-mail from Giles Ellis of Schofield has jolted me into action, thank you Giles. We have to pick ourselves up after this epidemic and make the best of it.

I have always had a soft spot for the Schofield Bronze Beater, it always reminds me of my early visits to Salon QP. These distinctive British watches offering something very different to the Swiss mainstream. Then made from bronze which do my mind is the horological equivalent of selvedge denim.

This the latest “Japanese” edition is limited to 29 pieces is built is inspired by Giles Ellis’ love of that country, its people and their traditions.

The dial is the colour of Indigo dyed Boro, a unique patched and repaired workwear cloth. The British made case is heavily patinated bronze.The case back depicts Daruma-San a traditional Japanese doll. The
character on his chest means good luck and these dolls are often given as gifts prior to a challenge or task. The case back engraving
also shows a Tokyo drain cover design of ginkgo and cherry blossom.

The watch strap is Mudcloth, a tough canvas fixed with plant seeds and mud for six months to achieve this rich colour.

You will notice from the techenical specification below this Beater features an STP movement. To be completely honest I only looked at the specifications to see if thi “Japanese” edition also used a Japanese movement. I questioned Giles about this choice and he told me that all the Schofield Beaters are now transitioning to STP 1-11 movements from the ETA 2724.

So as we have come to expect from Schofield a beautifully presented watch with loads details to talk about. I look forward to being able to do that in person, hopefully soon. Stay safe everyone.


Movement STP 1-11, self-winding mechanical. Hours, minutes and hacking sweep seconds
Power reserve 44 hours
Diameter 25.6mm
Height 4.6mm with rotor
Jewels 26
Power reserve 44 hours
Frequency 28,800 VPH 4Hz
Case Bronze Patinated
Diameter 44mm
Crystal diameter 35.5mm
Height not including lugs 14.8mm
Width between lugs 24mm
Weight with strap and buckle 128 grams
Crystal Sapphire, AR coating
Case Back Heavily engraved Japanese design
Crown Double o-ring push in type with gold nail groove
Dials Split-level, painted, lacquered
Date None
Luminescence Super-LumiNova C3 green emission
Hands Brushed gold, Super-LumiNova C3 blue emission
Strap 24mm tapering to 22mm – Japanese Mudcloth pale face
Buckle Brushed steel
Box Ash and cedar
Serial Limited to 29 watches worldwide
Water resistance 200m
Warranty 2 years

Price is £3280 including VAT (UK / free shipping) or £2733 excluding VAT (US, Canada, Europe ROW + shipping)

Schofield Six Pips Podcast

I have just dedicated two evenings to listening to the first and second episodes of the Schofield podcast – Six Pips.

Both episodes feature the “Principle Keeper” of Schofield watches, Giles Ellis in discussion with his colleague Harry.

The first episode covers at length Giles’ thought on design, at well over an hour it is pretty long but really fascinating, so much so that I immediately listened to the second episode the following evening.

In the second episode, which debatably should have been the first, Giles explains how and why he founded the Schofield watch company. Whilst doing so he gives great insight into what the brand is all about. We also gives some very useful pointers to anyone thinking of starting a watch company  thinking it is an easy way to make money ( a clue, it is not).

I always find, after listening to the personalities creating British watch brands, a great admiration for their passion. People like Giles really love what they are creating despite the numerous obstacles.

These podcasts are definitely worth listening to. Personally, I am really looking forward to the next episode.


Schofield Telemark – the first review

After several years of admiring the distinctive watches from Sussex’s most famous  watch company, I managed to exchange a few words with the founder Giles Ellis.  On an off chance, I asked if there might be the opportunity to do a review.
Just after the Christmas break an e-mail arrived out of the blue. Giles had remembered and asked if I would like to do the first review  of their new Telemark, a watch I had admired at its launch during the Salon QP week.

Schofield Telemark

The Telemark sits within the ‘Markers’ family of Schofield watches, which was originally pioneered by the Daymark. This model being inspired by the 1960s war film ‘Heroes of Telemark’. 

This watch has features common to previous watches however, the Telemark stands alone as a bold addition to the Markers collection. It is Schofield’s first white dialled watch, Schofield’s first fully numerated dial and even Schofield’s first design to be inspired by a coastline outside of the British Isles.

Before giving more details I think it is important to describe what this very particular watch is like to wear.

But before covering the watch I cannnot ignore the very impressive black Osmo Ash box, below. Though it does make you wonder whether someone with a collection of several watches can find space to store the increasingly large and impressive packaging.

The Telemark Box

After a lifetime of relatively regular sized watches I have recently got used to my slightly larger than my usual, Pinion. The  44mm Telemark takes my “large experience” to another level, especially the case height.
To my surprise once on my wrist it actually doesn’t feel that large and it is perfectly possible to almost not notice your wearing it and I didn’t even once risk bashing it on walls or furniture which I frequently do with my personal Speedmaster. The watches distinctive character though does not really come from it’s size but the design itself and the white dial in particular. The white/grey/brushed steel combination  does express a wintery “Telemark” vibe.

Telemark on the wrist

The first thing I did then was to put the watch to my ear, The dial does not mention automatic and I had not yet read the specifications, I wanted to understand wether it was an auto or manual. To my surprise I couldn’t hear the sound of a rotor inside the case. To be sure I then checked the spec sheet and discovered it was in fact an auto. I imagine the case thickness keeps the watch quiet.
Design wise there are some many details to be appreciated. The most obvious on my particular watch being the fucsia lining to the grey strap and the design of the caseback.

The reverse of the Telemark

Should this strap not be to your taste one of the wonderful features of the Schofield range is the wide choice of straps available making the watches even more individual. Then we shouldn’t forget the customised straps from Schofield+Cudd. I kept thinking this watch would be great on one of the Harris tweed straps, something I would never consider for any other watch I can think of.
Once turned  over the more design details become visible, for the first few days I continued to see something I had not noticed. For example the Schofield brand name being written very discretely in the number 6 position on the dial. There are so many little quirky features I will resist the temptation to list them but for me the dial hand combination works really well.
Then there is my favorite detail of all the crown and the groove in the case that makes it really easy to operate.

Schofield Telemark Crown

 The Technical Details Are:
  • Fully numerated submarine dial
  • Dimensions – 44mm diameter base, 42mm bezel, 15.1mm high
  • The word ‘Schofield’ replaces 9 minute marks on the chapter ring
  • The hour markers in the chapter ring are black anodised appliqués filled • with Super-LumiNova C5
  • Case – Vapour-blasted stainless steel
  • Weight – 134 grams with strap
  • Date disk reprinted for horizontal readability at 4:30
  • All the parts of the hands and the windows line up when overlapping
  • The second hand tapers towards the tip and the counterpoise
  • The second hand counterpoise is filled with lume
  • The case has a nail rebate for pulling out the crown
  • The crown also has a groove for your nails to grip to pull out
  • The case has a slight radius on the outer edge of the bezel
  • The box is Osmo ash, the queen of English timbers
  • Colour – Silver
  • Crown – Push in, machine finish stainless steel, engraved
  • Dial – White, luminescent applied markers Super-LumiNova C5
  • Hands – Laddered baton, Super-LumiNova C3
  • Movement – ETA 2824-2
  • Power reserve – 38 hours
  • Functions – Hours, minutes and seconds and date
  • Case back – Stainless steel, engraved with Jomfruland lighthouse
  • Crystal – Sapphire
  • Water resistance – 200m
  • Strap – Your choice
  • Strap bars – Stainless, vapour-blasted
  • Buckle – Brushed stainless steel, engraved
  • Serialisation – Sequential numbering
  • Warranty – 2 years

For more information and lots of really super images you should visit the Schofield website.

So in conclusion, I really enjoyed my time with the Telmark. The perfect location for a review would have been my February ski break, but I already had other horological commitments for that. At the same time I was really pleased to have the opportunity to write the first review which I did not want to postpone. Maybe I have another chance for next February.

My thanks to Melodie of Schofield for organising the logistics of this loan and for her cheery notes.

London Watch Week

I don’t think last week was officially know as “watch week” but that is how it turned out for me, a few events growing out of the Salon QP.

Although maybe “week” might not be quiet the right definition as for me everything started mid-October when I met Nicholas Bowman-Scargill for a catch-up. We had first met a year earlier, before he re-launched the Fears brand at the Salon QP 2016. Nicholas told me all about his first year and the three new watches he would be announcing at this years show.  He revealed these in order of significance. The first being an additional colour to the existing Redcliff range this time a pretty striking Passport Red.

Redcliff Passport Red

Next I was expecting a “mechanical Redcliff”, which seemed to be the obvious development. But no, the next watch Nicholas showed me was the quartz Redcliff Continental. The Continental version has a window just the “6” position enabling the wearer to display a second time zone. A very useful feature for international travellers or people with far flung families.

The Continental Range

Then came the news I had been expecting the Fears mechanical watch, not however as I was imagining a Redcliff but a completely new watch – the Brunswick the first mechanical watch for the new Fears.

The Brunswick concept & inspiration

At this time Nicholas was only able to show me a drawing of the watch as the prototype had yet been delivered.  The finished watch was due to be shown at the Watchmakers Club evening before the Salon QP. I will dedicate a post to this interesting new watch.

This brings me to the start of “Watch Week”; the first event being the Watchmaker’s Club “Night Before” evening in a private club in London on Wednesday.  The Watchmakers Club is a new platform, intended to bring watch collectors and industry experts together via intimate, exclusive events and regular social gatherings. The team behind this unique organisation consists of watchmakers, independent brands, industry influencers and journalists.

It all started in 2012, Andreas Strehler exhibited for the first time at SalonQP in London. On the night before the opening of SalonQP, he invited a few friends and watch enthusiasts to share a drink, talk about watches and the world in general. The idea of The Night Before was born.

On the first evening only a handful of what would become a band of friends showed up at the Lansdowne Club in Mayfair. Over the years, The Night Before became an institution: A gathering of interesting people interested in the world of watches and as the guest list began to grow the Lansdowne Club became too small to host the event.

This year the event was held at The Libary in St Martins Lane. There were two sections, one of which, upstairs, was dedicated the British brands, Fears, Garrick and Pinion. It was a great opportunity firstly to see the Fears Brunswick and Pinions new Atom finally in the metal.

Pinion Atom

The Atom doesn’t disappoint at all. As you can see the design clearly says, Pinion. As we have come to expect, Piers presented a really nice well built watch. Differently to previous Pinions you first notice the slimmer (11mm) steel case, made possible by the use of the Japanese Miyota 9105 automatic movement. Using this movement also enables Pinion to offer a watch at a much lower price point than we are used to from this brand, £790. It will be very interesting to see how this bet goes.

After Fears and Pinion I managed to squeeze through to the table where Garrick’s Simon Michlmayr  was displaying their watches, I was especially keen to see the new S1. This watch is built by master watchmaker, Craig Baird, and finished entirely by hand. This is Garrick’s most complicated timepiece to date, featuring a skeletonised dial and incorporating a power reserve indicator. Only five S1 timepieces will be made per annum.

Sketch of Garrick S1

Unfortunately due lack of space and light I couldn’t get a really decent picture so to give an idea of how the watch is I have taken this picture from Garrick website.

Giles Ellis of Schofield was also present that night along with Simon Cudd, of Schofield + Cudd straps, neither was displaying their products other than those they were wearing. I did manage a dingy peek at Schofield latest watch – the Telemark.

All in all it was a very pleasant evening but being a “school night” I  thought it wise to make my way home.

After “the Night Before” comes the actual night- the first evening of this years Salon QP. The big difference between the two evenings was the lighting.

I managed to say hello again to Simon Michlmayr and to get a shot of the Garrick range.

The Garrick range

I then found the two British stands together firstly, the Fears Departure lounge that was proving very popular with the new Brunswick attracting a great deal of praise. Then next door Schofield overseen by Giles Ellis himself and Simon Cudd with his straps. Again thanks to better light I managed to get some more useful pictures.

Schofield Telemark

Schofield Daymark

After visiting the Brits I went a little of topic and had quick chat with two brands that I have admired for a while Habring from Austria and Switzerlands Czapek both really nice and like everyone super enthusiastic about their work.

On Saturday I visited the Salon again this time with my sons, in the hope of planting the seed of an interest in watches early. They were very impressed by the chocolate offered at the Fears Departure lounge.

Inside Bremont’s Watchmaking Factory- Gear Patrol Photo Essay

After discovering from their latest brochure that Bremont have a manufacturing facility at Silverstone I came across this great article on the Gear Patrol website. After the pessimism of my previous posting this all looks very optimistic for the future of real manufacturing in the UK.

Gear Patrol article

Giles English turns the steel watch case over in his hands, a boyish excitement glinting in his eyes. Beside him, Bremont’s lead technician and their designer eye the sharp circle as it shines in the florescent lighting of the facility. The three men are huddled silently around a simple watch part made entirely in the UK, a feat indicative of the future of British watchmaking and their part in it.

Bremont is known for its Trip-Tick design, the trademark three-piece, hardened-steel case upon which every piece in the core collection is built, and its aviation underpinnings, a nod to the family’s legacy of flying. But what drives Bremont’s founders, brothers Nick and Giles English, is a deep desire to reclaim the lost tradition of British watchmaking.

That much was clear when we took a look inside Bremont’s facilities in the United Kingdom to observe their production process. We peered into their new state-of-the-art R&D space at Silverstone Race Track; we looked over the shoulders of Bremont watchmakers at their two-story headquarters location in Henley-on-Thames. We witnessed, for the first time, how the brand ticks.

caption caption


Once milled, the cases move into an automated finishing machine where technicians monitor the initial polishing process.

Case parts await the next phase in the process at Bremont’s Silverstone facility.

Once through the initial polishing phase, cases are carefully inspected. A technician checks every case part, finalizing the case finish by hand. Afterward, a computer-guided laser eye measures and records any variance and an ultra-sensitive nib rechecks every case.


Blank case backs are arranged for laser engraving.

The laser engraving process takes milliseconds and is done under the close supervision at the Silverstone facility.

Bremont is working to bring all aspects of their production to Britain. While it's a gradual process, they have made serious inroads at Silverstone. Here, a template base plate is inspected.

A fully assembled movement is scrutinized under a microscope.

A movement is deconstructed for review. While much of the movement is still of Swiss origin, Bremont is making strides to produce more parts in the UK.

At their Henley-on-Thames facility, watchmakers assemble watches, fitting cases from the various models with movements. Afterward, the watches are wound and tested for accuracy and amplitude.

Horology high: the rise of Schofield – Telegraph

By Stephen Doig

October 07, 2014 15:40

The Blacklamp Carbon watchThe Blacklamp Carbon watch

The Blacklamp Carbon watch

There are few global watch brands that can say they operate out of a bucolic village in the West Sussex countryside. But then there are few watchmakers that can also boast ‘ukulele maker’ under their skillset. However, such is the visionary nature of Giles Ellis’s pioneering watch brand, Schofield, that the horological rule book is being quietly re-written, from a leafy corner of the English countryside. What began as a personal quest to find a watch that fitted his exacting personal taste has evolved into an international operation that has carved out a curious niche in the competitive world of watch-making.

‘Schofield was never a commercial enterprise, at the start it was about creating one watch for myself’, says polymath Ellis, who previously worked as coding specialist, product designer and restorer of musical instruments, and who heads a talk at the fine watch exhibition SalonQP next month on the design element of watch production.

It was a combination of expertise and uncompromising personal taste that prompted Ellis to handcraft his own amplifier. ‘All my life I’ve been someone who likes things to be just right, and as such the products I’m attracted to tend to be incredibly expensive. So I’ve ended up furnishing my life with things that I’ve made with my own hand.’ The execution of this amplifier laid the foundations for what was to become the Schofield template, even though Ellis didn’t realise it at the time. Despite it being purely for personal use, Ellis branded the amp as a ‘Schofield’ product. ‘At the time, I was into spaghetti Westerns and Schofield was the name of a revolver used by Jessie James. It’s the bad boy’s revolver of choice’.

This incarnation of Schofield swiftly evolved into a watch brand, after Ellis – with trademark dynamism – decided to create his own watch. ‘I got completely immersed in the project,’ he says by way of understatement, ‘and quickly learned that to have the watch made the way I wanted, I’d have to set up a minimum order. I knew that I was going to end up with more watches than I could ever need, and that was the tipping point that turned Schofield into a business.’ Making their debut in 2011 at SalonQP, initially his business plan involved selling a grand total of three: in his first year he exceeded year three of that plan. But to Ellis, this isn’t about meteoric, instant success.

‘For four years before we launched, I was making sure that the business was as solid and had as much integrity as the watches themselves’. To that end, each element is impeccably conceived and handcrafted, with certain models made in Germany (an emerging talent on the world watch stage) and some in England. A carefully curated range includes the Signalman DLC, Signalman Polished and Blacklamp, each impeccably made and some featuring specially developed materials (the Blacklamp employs a patented rendering of carbon fibre called Morta), sleekly designed and (for that dash of English eccentricity) named after UK lighthouses because of their longevity and engineering. Salon QP sees a new addition to the roster, with the launch of the Beater (details firmly confidential at this point) and a new pen with custom-made ink mixed by Schofield. Clearly, Schofield is intent on writing its own future.





Bremont is pleased to announce the arrival of Stephen McDonnell to its technical team. Stephen, originally from Northern Ireland, was senior instructor at Wostep in Switzerland before he left to pursue a career in movement design. Stephen has been instrumental in the design and prototype build of many great movements working with a number of the most prestigious Swiss watch brands, he is one of the few watch makers capable of designing and building complete movements by hand. Stephen has moved from Switzerland to join the ever increasing technical and design team at Bremont. This signing demonstrates Bremont’s continued investment of in-house, UK based skills as part of a long term investment in British watch making.

Giles English “It is great that we are able to attract someone of Stephen’s caliber to join the company. We have a wonderful team utilizing skills from different industries to be able to fulfill our long term aims and commitment to build as much as we can in the UK.”

Nick English “Nothing is easy when building watches and it takes considerable investment in both our Henley and Silverstone facilities. We are eternally grateful for the help we receive from the Swiss industry as we could not do any of this without their support, but having someone as immensely talented as Stephen in the UK is a great asset to our team.”

Stephen McDonnell “I am very excited to be joining Bremont and moving back from Switzerland. Nick and Giles’ long term vision was a strong factor in me making the move, as well as being part of the revival of the British watch industry. My experience in all areas of movement manufacture will help support them in their continued plans and build on the great work they have done to date.”


Stephen qualified from Oxford University and moved to Switzerland in January 2001 to study at Wostep. While there, Wostep proposed that he remain with them and become an instructor. For 4 years he was the senior instructor at Wostep Neuchâtel, with responsibility for nearly all of the courses (full training, turning, refresher, restoration and complications). In 2007 he left Wostep and became independent and has since worked with the likes of MB&F, Christophe Claret, Maîtres du Temps and Peter Speake Marin for all aspects of design and prototyping manufacturing. He has also worked extensively in the restoration of vintage and complicated watches.

Q&A: Schofield Watch founder Giles Ellis – Salon QP

February 12, 2015